Thursday 11 March 2010

Thinking of privately buying a new vehicle? Don’t become a victim of car crime!

When you buy a new vehicle, do you really check what it is that you are buying? There are many stolen vehicles that are ‘disguised’ to make you believe you are buying the correct make and model. Here are a few tips you can consider when buying your next vehicle.

Make sure the seller either owns the vehicle, or is able to offer it for sale. Be careful of sellers using mobile phone numbers, especially adverts giving a phone number and time to call – it may be a phone box. Arrange to see the vehicle at the seller’s home, and not in a public space. Have a good look at the car. Check that all the locks open with the same key, and look for any signs of forced entry. Satisfy yourself that the vehicle is in good order.

Check that the vehicle’s identity and documents match by making sure the vehicle identity number (VIN) and the details of the car match the vehicle registration certificate, and check the part VIN or registration number etched on the windows matches the ones on the registration certificate and number plates.

Check if the vehicle registration certificate is real by holding it up to the light to see the DVLA watermark. You can also phone DVLA on 0300 790 6104 to check the registration certificate is real before you buy.

It is worth checking the vehicle’s details by phoning the DVLA and making enquiries with private vehicle check companies to ensure there is no outstanding finance on the vehicle.

For more information on buying a used car visit

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